I am studying a topic on the effects of drinking alcoholic beverages on the health and development of a breastfed baby and I came across the following statement:

The results of this study have not been duplicated, however.

The fact is that I could not extract any meaning out of this sentence and I really appreciate if you could help me with this.

The previous statement is as follows (if it helps any):

In a landmark study of 400 breastfed babies, gross motor development at 1 year of age lagged in infants whose mothers drank at least one drink daily during the babies' first three months of life.

  • The expression appears to be a common one in scientific literature. google.it/… – user66974 Feb 16 '17 at 9:27
  • Scientists Can't Duplicate Results of Many Psychology Experiments - laboratoryequipment.com/news/2015/08/… – user66974 Feb 16 '17 at 9:33
  • The following link may help : Reproducibility is the ability of an entire experiment or study to be duplicated, either by the same researcher or by someone else working independently. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reproducibility – user66974 Feb 16 '17 at 9:42
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    duplicated = reproduced, here. The results can be reproduced by others, by following the same recipe or another. Others have made the same finding. – Drew Feb 16 '17 at 14:56
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    I thought the term in this usage was "replicated". – Cascabel Feb 16 '17 at 19:08

The 'dictionary.com' (http://www.dictionary.com/browse/duplicated) defines the verb 'duplicate' as 'to do or perform again; repeat'. But the example sentence given (He duplicated his father's way of standing with his hands in his pockets.) does not seem to be fit to this context. Also, the same site gives an example sentence from a report titled, Why Can't We Find an AIDS Vaccine? published on 'thedailybeast.com' (http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/09/15/why-can-t-we-find-an-aids-vaccine.html?source=dictionary):

"The finding is heady stuff – if duplicated, this would represent one of the most effective approaches yet demonstrated".

In a similar context, the verb duplicate can mean: to do the experiment, research, study etc. again in order to substantiate results. What I understand from the sentence: "The results of this study have not been duplicated, however" is such a second study has not yet been conducted.

  • +1 The term can also be used where a subsequent experiment has been conducted, but failed to reproduce the results of the first experiment. – Lawrence Feb 16 '17 at 14:25

It's important to understand that, for research scientists, a very important part of the process of doing new research is having it duplicated by some other independent investigator. This serves to validate the results.

It's not uncommon for either a fluke or intentional cheating to produce results that cannot be duplicated by others, so any research that cannot be duplicated is considered suspect by the larger community.

The quoted line is referring to having an independent investigator successfully reproduce the results found in the original study.

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